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June 17, 2013
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Bite Work and Decoy Progression

Bite Work and Decoy Progression

In this short video, Mark Keating explains the progression of training a new decoy. He discusses why and how our series of DVDs on decoy training are laid out and the order in which they are being released.

June 17, 2013   |   2 Minutes, 38 Seconds

Leerburg Q&A
Ask your training question here

Question: I have 2 puppies (age 6 months and 3 months) and everyone seemed to think this was a good idea. They are fighting quite a bit and I'm not sure what to do. Should I give one pup to a friend or is there hope?

Hi Ed and Cindy,

I read your article on why not to get two puppies. Very informative. Unfortunately I have done this. I got one puppy first, waited until he (male) was 6 months, and then adopted an almost 3 month old puppy (female). They are both maltese/yorkshire terrier mixes. Almost everyone I talked to said this would be a good idea. I was wondering if you had any extra tips as they are not the exact age and not from the same litter or parents. You mentioned in the article to never leave them alone without being kenneled, which I do. They have been fighting quite a bit though, and I was wondering how to stop the dominance issue. I have been researching how to become a "pack leader" way before I obtained my first pup, but I am still having trouble knowing exactly how to act emotional and what to do in the moments of discipline and correction. Should I just try to give one of the pups to a friend or is there hope? Thanks so much

Cindy's Response:

The problem with 2 puppies (even if they are not from the same litter) is that you haven't had the opportunity to train them adequately yet. I'd suggest following the recommendations in our puppy DVDs, Your Puppy 8 Weeks to 8 Months and Living with Your Puppy~Establishing Pack Structure.

I'd make sure they did not have free range to interact with each other, because you are not going to be able to stop the fighting and puppy interactions at this point.  In a perfect world, you would have 2 ex-pens set up and also 2 crates for sleeping and times you can't supervise. 

One pup at a time is out of the ex-pen or crate, always ON LEASH. It's an extremely difficult task to raise and train 2 puppies. I'm an experienced dog trainer and I would not take on this task unless I had no choice. I've done it before and it was exhausting. One puppy will always get the short end of the stick because most people simply don't have the time, energy or dog training skills to do them both justice. I usually like to have 2-3 years of age between my dogs. It takes me that long to have my dogs completely trained to where I want them (both house manners and obedience skills). At that point, I feel that it will be fair to both dogs to add a new one to the household. 

We have 3 house dogs now, aged 10, 5 and 2 years. 

We have an extensive article section on all aspects of puppy training. You may find some info to help you there as well.  

Let me know if you have any other questions. 
Cindy Rhodes


Hi Cindy,

Thanks so much for this advice. I do feel like I'm slowly killing myself due to the necessary devotion as my older puppy has backtracked, so it really is like training two untrained puppies. If a close friend is dying to have a pup I will do that because that is better than all 3 being miserable. My older pup despises her. Although I did a test run with a puppy before and he acted nicely towards her. Thank you for your answer, so much, and thank you for the links leading to additional information.

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Puppies.

We get a number of Q&As every week, if you would like to read this week's Q&As, click here and check out the 'Recent Questions' section!

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Search Engine. This search engine was written specifically for Leerburg by our in house IT manager. Our search engine is specific to Leerburg and only searches and the Leerburg web forum. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!

Customer Comments

On Leerburg's Q&A Section

Dear Cindy,

Thank you for helping people understand their dogs rather than trying to force their dogs to understand them.  I’m sure you are saving many dogs from a fate they don’t deserve.

The Michael Ellis School for Dog Trainers

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